Last updated on: 2/13/2024 | Author:


The background and pro and con arguments were written by staff based upon input from the following sources.

1.Roger Hood, “Capital Punishment,”, Aug 29, 2023
2.Amnesty International, “Death Sentences and Executions 2022,”, May 2023
3.Jonathan Allen, "U.S. to Carry Out 13th and Final Execution under Trump Administration,", Jan. 15, 2021
4.Barbara Campbell, "U.S. Executes Dustin Higgs in 13th and Final Execution under Trump Administration,", Jan. 16, 2021
5.Death Penalty Information Center, "Execution Database," (accessed Jan. 18, 2021)
6.Aris Folley, "Federal Government Carries Out 13th and Final Execution under Trump,", Jan. 16, 2021
7.Gallup, “Death Penalty,” (accessed Sep. 18, 2023)
8.Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, “Talion,”, Feb. 22, 2011
9.U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, “Leviticus,” (accessed Sep. 19, 2023)
10.Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Archive, “Retributive Justice,”, June 18, 2014
11.Charles Stimson, “The Death Penalty Is Appropriate,”, Dec. 20, 2019
12.Jon'a F. Meyer, “Retributive Justice,”, Sep 12, 2014
13.Robert Blecker, “If Not the Parkland Shooter, Who Is the Death Penalty For?,”, Oct. 27, 2022
14.George Brauchler, “Coloradans Should Have the Final Say on the Death Penalty (and I’d Hope They Keep It),”, Mar. 1, 2019
15.Paul Cassell, “In Defense of the Death Penalty,”, Summer 2008
16.Gary Cartwright, “Free to Kill,”, Aug. 1992
17.Katherine Burgess, “Their Father Killed Their Mother. Now, the Siblings Disagree on whether He Should Be Executed,”, May 8, 2019
18.Meghna Chakrabarti and Brian Hardzinski, “How Murder Victims’ Families Are Responding to Death Penalty Halt in California,”, Mar. 20, 2019
19.Jayson Knight, “Central Oklahoma Weeklies | Death Penalty is Justice for Families of Murder Victims,”, Oct. 26, 2022
20.Equal Justice Initiative, “Death Penalty,” (accessed Sep. 20, 2023)
21.Center on Wrongful Convictions, “Explore the Issues,” (accessed Dec. 13, 2023)
22.Josh Marcus, “The ‘Stepchild of Lynching’: How the Death Penalty Targets Black People,”, Oct. 13, 2021
23.Ed Pilkington, “Virginia May Be First in South to Abolish Death Penalty and Abandon ‘Legalized Lynching,’”, Feb. 2, 2021
24.ACLU, “The Death Penalty: Questions and Answers,”, April 9, 2007
25.Amnesty International, “Death Penalty Cost,”, June 26, 2023
26.Jeffrey Miron, “The Financial Implications of the Death Penalty,”, July 20, 2023
27.Benjamin Zober, “The Death Penalty Is Immoral. It Is Murder,”, Sep. 20, 2020
28.Dakin Andone, “Why the Brother of Parkland School Shooting Victim Carmen Schentrup Is against the Death Penalty for Her Killer,”, Oct. 10, 2022
29.John Bessler, “A Torturous Practice: Prohibiting the Death Penalty’s Use through a Peremptory Norm of International Law,”, May 4, 2023
30.Areesha Lodhi, "What’s Nitrogen Hypoxia? Alabama Carries Out Kenneth Smith’s US Execution,", Jan. 25, 2024